SkyTerra 1 Sat Ready for Service

LightSquared announced its Boeing-built space-based network is ready to begin service.

"Boeing has delivered LightSquared's SkyTerra 1 satellite after integrating the satellite's communications with the ground segment to form the first integrated wireless broadband and satellite network," said Craig Cooning, VP and GM of Boeing's Space and Intelligence Systems said. "The LightSquared SBN is an end-to-end satellite communications system that…demonstrates again that Boeing is the first choice to provide next-generation satellite systems to customers seeking leading-edge communications solutions."

The SkyTerra 1 satellite was launched on Nov. 14 from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. It has a 22 meter L-band antenna and will relay high-speed data to and from four LightSquared terrestrial gateways in the United States and Canada.

"The acceptance of our SkyTerra 1 satellite and successful network commissioning is a quantum leap forward toward creation of LightSquared's next-generation integrated network, the world's first to combine satellite and terrestrial technologies," said Sanjiv Ahuja, chairman and CEO for LightSquared. "The LightSquared network will empower our company to offer 4G speed, value and reliability while enabling universal wireless connectivity throughout the United States and Canada."

While the satellite network itself is not expected to cause interference to GPS reception, there has been concern that the ancillary terrestrial part of the network will interfere with GPS signals. The FCC made resolution of GPS interference concerns part of LightSquared's authorization for its terrestrial network.

Doug Lung

Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. He has been with NBC since 1985 and is currently vice president of broadcast technology for NBC/Telemundo stations.